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"Getting money is like digging with a needle;
spending it is like water soaking into sand."

Japanese Proverb


Buy and Sell Online

How to earn money selling your clutter

Do you have DVDs you no longer watch, video games your kids are bored with, books you've already read? Then clean out your closets, garage and attic and sell your used goods online. You can reduce clutter in your own home, help the recycling effort by having your good reused and make money--all at the same time. You know the old saying, "One man's trash is another man's treasure". Old baby toys maybe useless to you to if your kids are in grade school, but to a new mom on a budget they could be a valuable find.

Some of the more popular places to sell your stuff online are:

  • Amazon - Sell Your Stuff - everyone knows Amazon sells books, but less well known is that they also have a marketplace section where you can buy and sell used goods that include books, text books, DVDs, cameras -- you name it. I typed in "kitchen sink" into their used products search feature just for fun. I didn't actually find a kitchen sink, but I did find 26 books and other products with the term "kitchen sink" in the title.

    ne of the nice features with Amazon is that many products include used price guidelines so you don't have to worry about way over pricing or underpricing your goods.

    I've personally bought a number of used books from Amazon's marketplace with all positive experiences.

  • eBbay - is without a doubt the most ubiquitous online auction house and used good reseller online. They are so popular that they are even the subject of a Weird Al Yankovich parody CD called eBay. With eBay you can sell goods through their standard online auction format, set a fixed price, use your own eBay Store, or place an ad in their real estate section. They even have an audio tour on how to best sell your goods.

    We have a number of friends and relatives who make a nice side income just from buying goods at heavily discounted prices at garage sales and thrift shops and the reselling the items at a higher price on eBay. The ones that seem to be successful focus on certain niches - such as a popular brand of toys or a certain type of fitness equipment. That way they develop a pretty good feel for what they can sell and the price.

  • I used to volunteer at local library books sales where books were sold for only 25 - 50 cents each. On the last few hours of the last day of the sale many libraries will often sell bags of books for just a couple of dollars per bag. There are many book dealers who go to these sales, scoop up the books they think will resell and then sell them on eBay, sometimes at 10 times or more of the price they paid for them.

    One person I noticed who really had the reselling used books on eBay technique down pat came to the library sales with a cell phone with a headset. While she was at the sale looking through the books, she was quietly reading off the book names and ISBN numbers to someone at home with a computer who was looking up the current prices of the used books on eBay. That way she was able to tell which books she should buy to be able to resell them at a profit.


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